Cisco has developed a comprehensive line of wireless LAN products and technologies engineered to provide continual access to data and other resources and to facilitate teamwork among workers, partners, suppliers, and customers. Cisco's wireless products include Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of access points (APs), plus Cisco's Wireless Network Controller plug-ins and standalone devices. Progent's certified wireless experts can help organizations of all sizes to utilize Cisco wireless products to accommodate the current model of BYOD networks by converging their wired/wireless ecosystems to benefit from simplified configuration, predictable throughput, centralized control, uniform policy enforcement, fault tolerance, and advanced protection.
Cisco's Converged Solution for Bring-Your-Own-Device and Wired/Wireless Connectivity
The Cisco Unified Wireless architecture can expand to as many as 18,000 access points with Layer 3 mobility at central or offsite venues like enterprise campuses, university lecture halls, branches, and home offices. Cisco's 802.11x wireless access points and wireless controllers are part of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are designed to support the same level of security, throughput, and ease of management for wireless LANs that companies demand in their wired ecosystem. Cisco's technology incorporates built-in mobility services like IP voice, IP video, and secure guest access. Cisco's Unified Wireless technology enables companies to create wireless environments that improve the way they do business and improve productivity through a dynamic and connected employee base.
Progent's Cisco CCIE network consulting services can provide remote or on-premises support to assist you to plan, configure, manage, upgrade, and troubleshoot converged wired and wireless network infrastructure of any size and for any environment. Also, Progent offers economical remote and on-premises Wi-Fi site surveys to help you to design and deploy a Wi-Fi LAN with custom-designed AP clustering optimized for your specific work area layout, building characteristics, and application workloads.
Small Business, Aironet and Meraki Access Points
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki families of APs enable you to converge wired/wireless infrastructure to deliver the coverage, capacity, performance, protection and manageability required to support virtually any environment. These wireless access points start at bare bones, single-radio 802.11b/g/n units with data rates of 300 Mbps designed for small companies or home offices to dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n/ac APs suitable for supporting hundreds of wireless clients per AP and offering throughput of up to 1.9 Gigabits per second. Cisco's current selection of access points can be combined or clustered to deliver the capacity to handle environments with high client density and with high usage rates of HD video applications.
Cisco Small Business Family of Access Points
Cisco's Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Series of wireless access points are Linux-based units engineered as value-priced Wi-Fi APs for light workloads. Most models in Cisco's Small Business portfolio of APs support Cisco's Single Point Setup system, which makes it possible to configure, control and repair a cluster of wireless access points from one AP through an intuitive web browser interface. All of the versions include POE and feature Quality of Service (QoS), rogue access point awareness, and bridging for wirelessly connecting to another Ethernet LAN.
The Cisco Small Business WAP121 Wireless-N AP is a wallmount, single-radio 2.4GHz unit able to support 16 802.11n wireless clients, includes a Fast Ethernet interface, allows up to four AP devices and 40 active clients per cluster, and supports sustained throughput of up to 300 Mbps. The Cisco Small Business WAP131 is a desktop dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n AP that can handle 16 wireless clients per radio for a total of up to 32 wireless clients, includes a Gigabit Ethernet port, and can support sustained data rates of 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP131 Wireless-N does not support AP clustering. The Cisco WAP150 is an entry-level dual-radio 802.11ac/n wireless access point that includes a 1xGE Poe port and can handle 16 clients per radio with 867 Mbps performance for 802.11ac clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. Cisco's Small Business WAP150 allows 4 APs per cluster.
Cisco's Small Business WAP321 Access Point is a wall-mountable selectable-band (either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) 802.11a/b/g/n unit with support for 80 wireless clients sharing an 8-device cluster. The Cisco WAP321 includes a Gigabit Ethernet port and can deliver sustained throughput of 300 Mbps for the selected radio. Cisco's WAP351 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11a/b/g/n AP that includes a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet switch and can support 32 active wireless clients per radio for a total of up to 64 clients, and support throughput of 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP351 does not support clustering. Cisco's Small Business WAP361 is a dual-band 802.11ac Wave 1 access point that includes a 5 x Gb Ethernet switch, allows 32 clients per radio, and delivers 867 Mbps performance for wireless AC clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. The Cisco WAP361 allows 8 WAP361 access points per cluster. Cisco's wallmount WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-radio AP that supports 802.11n and the latest 802.11ac IEEE Wi-Fi specification. The WAP371 Wireless-AC/N has a Gigabit Ethernet interface, can handle 32 active clients on each radio, and eight APs for each cluster.
The Cisco WAP561 Wireless-N Dual Radio Selectable Band access point includes one Gigabit Ethernet interface and dual concurrent radios that offer 450 Mbps throughput per radio, support 64 devices per radio, and allow up to 16 access points for each cluster. The Cisco WAP551 is like the WAP 561 but features a single radio selectable band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz). Cisco's WAP571 and WAP571E (a ruggedized outdoor version) are dual-band 802.11ac Wave 1 APs that feature two Gb Ethernet ports with link aggregation, and up to 1.9 Gigabit/sec throughput with 1300 Mbps over 11ac and 600 Mbps on 802.11n. Both APs support 32 clients on each radio and 16 WAP371 wireless access points per cluster.
For details about Progent's support for both current and legacy Cisco Small Business series of WiFi access points, see Cisco Small Business 100, 300 and 500 wireless access points system design and troubleshooting.
Cisco's Aironet Line of Access Points
Cisco's Aironet line of wireless APs has for years been the market leading AP solution. Aironet access points range from value priced models to advanced APs. Cisco's Aironet line span several generations of models compliant with the evolving Wi-Fi standard. The current portfolio of Aironet access points work with Cisco's Unified Wireless Network software and include 802.11ac Wi-Fi technology, which delivers three times the throughput plus greater range and density compared to the prior generation of devices. Cisco's current dual-frequency Aironet APs continue to accommodate 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for clients without 802.11ac capability.
The oldest Aironet access points are outdated devices that have come to end-of-sale status and are no longer supported by Cisco. Progent still offers support for the entire Aironet family of APs and can assist you to manage and troubleshoot your existing Aironet Wi-Fi system or upgrade efficiently to current Aironet products. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for both current and legacy Cisco Aironet access points, refer to Cisco Aironet wireless access points planning and support.
Cisco's Meraki Wireless Access Points
Cisco's portfolio of Meraki 2.4/5 GHz indoor wireless access points range from budget-friendly models for general use to enterprise-class units that offer up to 2.5 Gigabit per second performance. Each Meraki indoor AP provides next-generation capabilities like plug-and-play deployment, in-depth security, BYOD support, extensive traffic analysis, zero-touch web-based firmware updates, and centralized cloud management via an intuitive dashboard. Every Cisco Meraki indoor access point also includes dual high-power radios with boosted reception as well as a dedicated radio that provides (WIDS/WIPS) security for RF analysis and deep packet inspection.
Cisco's Meraki outdoor access points are IP67 rated, built to operate in rugged outdoor environments, and able to withstand dust particles, vibration and humidity. Meraki outdoor access points include a 1 x Gbit Ethernet port and offer advanced features such as cloud-based management with multi-site control, native Active Directory integration, built-in antivirus scan, 1-click guest access and guest isolation firewall, application-aware traffic shaping, plus self-configuring mesh with MIMO and beamforming. For details about Progent's support for Meraki access points and cloud management, refer to Meraki APs consulting.
Cisco Wave 2 802.11ax Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers allow fast data exchange, provisioning, administration, analysis and debugging for Cisco Wi-Fi appliances and services. Cisco has developed both hardware and virtual wireless controllers for unified management of WiFi networks, but WLANs with a large number of wireless APs are better served by physical Wi-Fi controllers. Wave 2 wireless controller appliances from Cisco deliver significant benefits over Wave 1 and older products such as greater performance, simultaneous support for both 1G and 10G interfaces, enhanced application visibility and control, and hardened, built-in security.
The Cisco 3504 WiFi Controller is a value-priced device available in a desktop form factor and intended for small and medium-sized businesses. You can use the 3504 model in a centralized network environment such as in lean branch and home-based offices administered over the wide-area network with Cisco FlexConnect, or in mesh deployments where Ethernet cabling is sparse. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller can handle as many as 150 wireless APs and 3,000 users, offers 4 Gbps throughput, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 3504 wireless controller features a Cisco Multigigabit interface (up to 5 Gigabit Ethernet) and four 1-Gigabit Ethernet ports. Access points can be connected to the WiFi controller via two Power over Ethernet (PoE) ports. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller offers subsecond failover for APs and users, which allows uninterrupted availability for apps. Like other current Wave 2 wireless controllers from Cisco, the 3504 model has the integrated ability to work with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services Engine, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 wireless controllers.
The Cisco 5520 WiFi Controller, offered in a 1RU package, is intended to support larger enterprises and campus environments and can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures. The 5520 Wi-Fi controller supports up to 1,500 access points and 20,000 users, offers 20 Gbps throughput, and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 WiFi controller includes two 10 GE ports and incorporates SSD storage, backup fans, optional dual power supplies, and rapid failover for uninterrupted availability.
Cisco's 8540 Wireless Controller, offered in a 2RU form factor, is a high-end WiFi controller designed to support large enterprises, service providers, and large campuses. The 8540 WiFi controller can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures and can handle up to 6,000 Wi-Fi access points and 64,000 users. The 8540 WiFi controller offers throughput up to 40 Gbps and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 8540 controller comes with four 1-GB or 10GE ports and features solid-state storage, dual power supplies, redundant fans, and subsecond failover.
Wave 1 Cisco WiFi Network Controllers
Cisco wireless network controllers reduce the time and expense required to deploy, manage, and troubleshoot wireless networks by centralizing control of critical tasks like setting up wireless access points, enforcing consistent policies across wired/wireless LANs, supporting enterprise-wide QoS for IP voice and HD video, tracking and troubleshooting network performance, activating wireless intrusion prevention system (wIPS) capabilities to defend against cyber break-ins and DDoS attacks, and managing IPv6 clients. Cisco has developed wireless LAN controllers for businesses of any size and offers desktop or rackmount controllers, modular plug-in controllers for Cisco ISR routers and switches, and switches with built-in wireless controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 WiFi network controllers incorporate Cisco CleanAir tools to avoid RF interference and create self-healing wireless LANs for maximum 802.11n and 802.11ac performance and protection. Integrated Bonjour Gateways allow discovery across the enterprise for Apple applications. For fault tolerance, Cisco wireless network controllers allow wireless access point and client stateful failover by permitting a backup high-availability wireless controller to synchronize with a main wireless controller for access point license count, CAPWAP state and roaming keys, and AP CAPWAP state. If the main wireless controller stops working, thousands of APs and wireless clients can switchover at subsecond speeds to the backup controller.
Cisco's Wireless Module for ISR G2 Routers with UCS-E offers entry-level 802.11n and 802.11ac support for Cisco 2900 and 3900 routers deployed by smaller businesses and branch offices. This value-priced and expandable module can handle up to 200 access points and up to 6000 wireless clients. (To learn about Progent's remote and onsite consulting support services for Cisco routers, see Cisco router configuration and management services.)
Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU form-factor switches intended for small to mid-size businesses and satellite offices and have an integrated wireless network controller with the capability to support up to 40 Gb of wireless throughput per switch and 25 access points and 1000 wireless clients on each switch. Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU rackmount switches intended for mid-size businesses and large enterprises and include an integrated wireless controller with 40 Gb of wireless throughput per switch and support for 50 wireless access points and up to 2000 wireless clients. The Wireless Services Module2 (WiSM2) is a plug-in blade for Catalyst 6500 Series switches with an integrated wireless LAN controller designed for mid-to-large size businesses and able to deliver 20 Gbps throughput and able to handle up to 1000 APs and 15,000 clients. (To find out about Progent's consulting services for Cisco Catalyst switches, see Cisco switches deployment and management consulting.)
Cisco 2500 Series Wireless Controllers are entry-level desktop devices that simplify the provisioning and management of wireless LANs for small and midsize businesses and satellite offices. The 2500 Series wireless LAN controller supports from five to 75 wireless access points and 1000 clients and can deliver sustained performance of 1 Gbps.
The Cisco 5500 Series Wireless Controller is an expandable 1RU appliance intended for mid-to-large sized enterprises and campuses and can support 500 access points and 7,000 clients while providing 8 Gbps performance. The Cisco 5760 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU appliance designed for mid-to-large campuses with the ability to manage up to 1000 APs and 12,000 wireless clients and offering performance of 60 Gbps to handle high client densities and high usage of media-rich applications.
The Cisco Flex 7500 Wireless Controller is intended to manage thousands of wireless remote sites from a single location, avoiding the costs of a Wi-Fi controller at each remote site. The 1RU rackmount Flex 7500 allows you to establish a private cloud to configure, track, manage, and repair as many as 6000 access points and up to 64,000 clients while handling 1 Gbps performance. The Cisco 8500 Wireless Controller is a 1RU device designed to manage wireless environments for very large campuses or for service providers and can be expanded to handle up to 6000 access points and up to 64,000 wireless clients while offering 10 Gbps throughput.
To learn more about Cisco wireless controllers, go to Cisco wireless controllers consulting and integration.
Legacy Cisco Access Points, Bridges and Wi-Fi Controllers Supported by Progent
The IEEE 802.11ac specification for Wi-Fi effectively rendered obsolete the previous releases of Wi-Fi devices for many environments that support high numbers of wireless clients and high usage of video-intensive software applications. Even for businesses who do not need the bandwidth efficiency of 802.11ac, many of Cisco wireless devices have arrived at end-of-life status, which can present serious maintenance and compliance problems. Progent's Cisco-certified consulting experts provide online and onsite support for a wide range of older-generation wireless products from Cisco. Progent can also assist companies to evaluate the financial justification for updating up-of-date wireless technology and can help in planning and executing affordable, non-disruptive migrations. The following are a sample of Cisco legacy wireless devices that Progent's consulting experts continue to support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet APs
Cisco Aironet 1000/1130AG family APs are intended for conventional workplaces and similar locations which have little environmental variability. These products include integrated antennas that offer predictable omnidirectional coverage profiles. The Aironet 1130G Series WAP is available for restricted domains that do not allow 802.11a operation.
Aironet 1230AG or 1240AG Series access points are ideal for more difficult radio frequency environments such as manufacturing plants and warehouses or above ceiling structures which often call for flexible protruding antennas and durable enclosures. The Cisco 1240G Series device is available for controlled domains that do not allow 802.11a/5GHz transmission.
Cisco Aironet 1500 lightweight outdoor wireless mesh access points offer a cost-effective, scalable, protected outdoor Wi-Fi solution for campus areas and for public venues that need access for portable devices.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Wireless LAN Bridges
Cisco wireless bridges offer a high-speed and feature-rich solution for connecting multiple LANs in a metropolitan area or public wireless environment. Cisco bridges offer a versatile, easy-to-use technology that meets the protection demands of wide-area networking professionals. These devices manage both point-to-point and PMP deployments with good range and the ability to handle traffic throughput as high as 54 Mbps.
Cisco wireless bridges offer throughput significantly faster than E1/T1 connections for far less cost, erasing the necessity of expensive leased lines when connecting separate offices. Since bridges carry no ongoing costs, the expenses saved on leased-line bills rapidly cover the initial equipment investment. Private lines and even leased lines made of metal or optical cable often require very expensive up-front costs in cases where they are impeded by obstacles such as freeways, railroads, or bodies of water. Cisco wireless LAN bridges can be installed quickly an offer a fast return on investment.
Cisco Aironet 1300 Series outside access points/bridges can be deployed as independent wireless access points, wireless bridges, or workgroup bridges. These devices have a ruggedized enclosure and provide fast, affordable wireless interfaces between multiple stationary or mobile networks and users.
Aironet 1400 bridges offer high-speed, reliable outdoor bridging for line-of-sight (LOS) environments. These devices include a ruggedized cover that can withstand harsh outdoor conditions and function within broad temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco Wireless Network Controllers
Cisco Wireless Controllers provide single-point management of wireless networks by simplifying the control of common technologies such as integrated intrusion prevention system (IPS), real-time RF management, automatic configuration, and N+1 redundancy. Wireless Network controllers work with small wireless access points to deliver superior throughput and high-end administration capabilities.
WLAN Controllers provide the manageability, expandability, security, and dependability that system managers require to build safe, large-scale wireless environments, from branch offices to small businesses to main campuses. Cisco's legacy Wireless Controllers can be configured together to offer accommodation for up to 2400 wireless access points for each roaming domain.
The Cisco WLCM or WLCM-E Module for Integrated Services Routers offers small-to medium businesses (SMBs) and enterprises an affordable solution to implement and manage protected WLANs at branch locations. These wireless controllers manage as many as a dozen Cisco wireless access points and are installable in 2800/3800 Series Integrated Services Routers and Cisco 3700 Series IS Routers. (For information concerning Progent's online and on-premises support for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router deployment and management support.)
How Progent's Consultants Can Help Your Business with Cisco Wireless Technology
Progent can provide access to a Cisco-certified CCIE consultant to help your business to plan, deploy, manage and repair a converged wired and wireless ecosystem incorporating a broad range of wireless devices that offer the same security, scalability, and ease of management you expect from a wired network. Progent can assist you to maintain legacy wireless products from Cisco or migrate seamlessly to current 802.11ac Wi-Fi technology. Progent's CISA and ISSAP security professionals can show you how to design protection into your wireless network and your business processes. Progent's disaster recovery consultants and business continuity planning consultants can help you to deploy the high availability features incorporated into Cisco's wired/wireless technologies so your converged network provides continuing return on investment.
Progentís Wireless Site Survey assists you to plan and deploy a state-of-the-art wireless network customized for your facilities, providing a wireless solution that provides seamless coverage, high speed and density, QoS to accommodate IP video, advanced security and compliance, and simplified management. Progent's Wireless Site Survey can be delivered remotely to reduce time and expense, or onsite for more challenging situations.
For a more in-depth discussion of Progent's wireless integration services, see Progent's Wireless Expertise.
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